The first steps to become an Entrepreneur

Tomasz Dobrzycki Written by Tomasz Dobrzycki
Published on 15 January 2017
3 min. read

Find out what it means to be a health and life-sciences entrepreneur!

On 30th November 2016 Innovation Forum Oxford closed the first round of four lectures in the series in Health and Life-Sciences Entrepreneurship, organised in collaboration with the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine and University of Oxford’s Medical Sciences Division. Here is the summary of what the audiences of around 100 current and future entrepreneurs experienced over the course of two months.

How to develop commercial ideas from research

Two weeks after the first lecture by Sir John Bell we hosted Torsten Reil, the CEO of NaturalMotion, Professor Andrew Carr, a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences and Professor Tom Brown, BBSRC Innovator of the Year 2016 from the University of Oxford. In a set of three fascinating talks, they shared their experiences in developing businesses from basic research. Among a multitude of advice, they discussed the concept of blue oceans, different pathways to innovation and the cycle research-innovate-commercialise. At the end of the evening, Professor Brown shared a few thoughts in a video interview:

How to explore business tools to develop and evaluate your idea

On 9th November our opening speaker was Maria Nikolou, Senior Programme Manager from the Entrepreneurship Centre by Saïd Business School. Maria began with explaining the concept of entrepreneurship and outlining key features of a successful business. After that, she went into details of the Canvas method of business planning, covering a variety of tools. The presentation was immediately followed by a case study. Maria applied the Canvas method to an example of OrganOx, an Oxford-based start-up with the mission to improve the quality of organs, especially livers, for transplantation. With this exercise, she also handed the stage over to Dr Les Russell, the CEO of OrganOx. Les took the audience on a journey through the company’s history, offering practical advice from his own experience. After the talks, both speakers shared their thoughts in video interviews:

How to define your target market

The last speaker of 2016 in our series was Neil Butler, a serial entrepreneur and the CEO of Spectromics, an innovative company tackling the microbial antibiotic resistance. Based on examples from his extensive experience, Neil explained the key rules of identifying the target market for a business. His advice was particularly tailored to entrepreneurs within the fields of MedTech and Health innovation. Below you can watch an interview with Neil done after his lecture:

This lecture series is a part of the IMAGINE IF! accelerator programme, designed to inspire and foster grassroots innovation. The business idea competition provides support, mentorship and opportunity to secure $30,000 of non-diluted capital. Further lectures will continue until May 2017 and cover a number of points regarding developing a business in healthcare and life sciences area.

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